For travelers planning vacations to the Gulf Coast and Caribbean during hurricane season, the right trip insurance policy can provide peace of mind and financial protection in case of unexpected storms. Here’s what your clients need to know when booking a trip this summer or fall.
1. Hurricane Season Spans Half the Year
The risk of hurricanes impacting your clients’ travel plans likely extends longer than they think. The official season kicks off June 1 and runs through November 30. Some travelers forget this, leaving them on the hook for vacation expenses they can’t enjoy when an early or late-season hurricane forces them to stay home. Talk to your clients about the risks during planning to prevent conflicts later if their trip gets cancelled.
2. Once a Storm is Named, It’s Too Late
It’s easy for clients to get caught up in the excitement of planning their trip—and forget important details like insurance. That is, until a hurricane warning shows up in the news, threatening their travel plans. Trip insurance only covers unforeseen events, so once a storm has been named, it’s too late to purchase a plan that protects their trip from the impact of that hurricane. Encourage your clients to buy trip insurance at the time of booking, so they don’t lose out on their investment.
3. Know the Plan Terms Before Cancelling
When the news about a hurricane breaks, your client may rush to cancel their trip. Before they do, advise them to review their plan to make sure they could be covered, and contact us with questions. Benefits for our most popular plans are designed to reimburse a customer’s lost expenses if either their home or destination has been rendered uninhabitable due to a natural disaster, or if a mandatory evacuation has been issued by the authorities. Until it makes landfall, there’s always a chance the hurricane’s course will change and their plans will be unaffected.
To help keep travelers out of harm’s way, we’ve recently made product enhancements such as adding mandatory evacuation as a covered reason for cancellation and interruption on our most popular plans. Benefits like this enable customers to cancel their trip for a covered reason if a natural disaster makes their destination unsafe. If your client wants more flexibility, recommend our premier plan, which includes a cancellation benefit that kicks in once a NOAA hurricane warning has been declared.
“We were in Aruba when Hurricane Matthew hit. Allianz was terrific with reimbursement when we had to purchase new airline tickets for return home.”
– Customer, 2019
When Travel Insurance Pays Off
Travel insurance can put money back in your client’s pocket when severe weather disrupts their plans. If your client has to cancel their trip for a covered reason, insurance can refund their pre-paid, non-refundable travel expenses, saving their investment so they can travel at a later date. If their travel is delayed by a covered storm and meets the minimum delay threshold (which varies by plan), insurance can reimburse the cost of eligible meals, hotel rooms, and additional transportation costs, up to the plan limits. And if their vacation is interrupted for a covered reason, they may be reimbursed for expenses incurred to get home or to another destination.
Learn more about benefits related to hurricanes.